Friday, 20 January 2012

Sound bite (2)

Some more observations on the subtle differences between Australian and Scottish English...

Recently I have noticed that Australian people seem to be practically horizontal in their approach to life. I occasionally find myself a little harassed by day to day challenges which may lead me to utter a phrase like, "I'm pure stressed out of my box", where a native 'Aussie' would say, "no worries, mate". A similar phrase that the Australians use is, "no dramas", which in Older Scots, the language of most of their forefathers, would be translated into, "dinnae fash yerself".

They are very friendly too and seem to add the suffix, 'mate', onto the end of all sentences e.g. "G'day mate", "no worries, mate", "want another beer, mate?" In Glasgow we are more commonly used to adding the suffix, 'but' or 'by the way' to the end of our sentences e.g. "Do you know what I mean, but?" or "I fancy a fish supper on the way home, by the way." Glaswegians can sometimes take offence to this. For instance I have overheard my countrymen many a time utter the words, "who do you think you're calling 'by the way', by the way' in a slightly threatening tone leading me to the conclusion that to call everyone 'mate' is a much better way to get along with people.

Furthermore, Australians seem to think that everything is very simple which I have noticed by the frequency of the word 'easy' or the phrase, 'too easy' in everyday speech. For example, back home if one asks something slightly out of the ordinary like, "can you pass me the salt as we don't have any on our table", or "can I have two rolls well fired and two soft this morning", one might be met with a tsk tsk or a sigh or even worse a roll of the eyes. In Australia, you would normally be answered with, 'easy' or 'too easy'. That's, of course, only after they have asked me to repeat oneself four times to catch the jist of what I'm saying.

1 comment: